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Arakimentari

3.8 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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(Apr 12, 2005)
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Editorial Reviews

Language: Japanese; Subtitles: English & Spanish

"I wish I was a god with a thousand arms, each one with a camera."
So says Nobuyoshi Araki, who with more than 350 photo books stakes the claim as the most published photographer in the world. While his work spans varied subjects, his erotic work is what made his reputation, one that is infamous as well as notorious. Provoking the sexual prudery of Japan, his work has shaped an entire culture and made him the country's face of sexual liberation.

Filmmaker Travis Klose, Bjork, Takeshi Kitano, Daido Moriyama, Richard Kern and other collaborators and friends give further insight into understanding the life and mind of this artistic dynamo. Arakimentari is not merely a biographical exploration, but more of an attempt to understand one man's artistic life and character - and through him learn something about the nature of genius.


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Nobuyoshi Araki, Björk, Richard Kern, Takeshi Kitano
  • Directors: Travis Klose
  • Format: AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Tartan Video
  • DVD Release Date: April 12, 2005
  • Run Time: 75 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0007R4TLM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #236,603 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Arakimentari" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
There is potential for an interesting film in Nobuyoshi Araki and his work. The man is a dynamo and comes across as a child who has somehow figured out how to get his way at will. Though the work is broader than Araki gets credit for, including in this film, he is mainly known for photographs that are considered art by some and exploitative pornography by others. Don't expect to hear from the latter camp in this movie, which accepts as a groundrule that the man is a great artist but never attempts to tell us why, and which comes across as merely a publicity effort for a man already holding a black belt in self-promotion.

Various pop culture figures tell us how great Araki is, but the film never gets past the surface nor asks any probing questions. Bjork is understandably infatuated with the lovely portraits of Araki's late wife. But neither that relationship nor the way in which her tragic death has shaped the man are fully examined.

One model places the photographer in the tradition of Japanese shunga (erotic and explicit woodblock prints). While there is indeed such a tradition (which, by the way, makes one laugh at the absurd claim on the DVD box that Araki is "provoking the sexual prudery of Japan." And by whom was this written? An American?), even the most casual viewer can immediately spot a clear difference; while shunga typically portrayed men and women together in erotic scenes, Araki's shots show just the woman, in a position of being dominated (with the photographer himself as the implicit dominator). But the model's comment is not questioned and indeed this film never asks anything serious or challenging.
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Irreverent, provocative, iconoclast and genial are some of the virtues more frequent about the significance and transcendence of this emblematic artist of the camera.

This dynamic documental offers us a wide landscape about his works along four decades. The way he got to give the Japanese sexuality a true identity, beyond the prejudices, through his original and sensual images of feminine nakedness. He possesses an admirable sense of humour and good vibrations visibly contrasted around every single frame.

Bjorg, Takeshi Kitano one of the most prestigious filmmakers, as well as other partners of the photography give overtly their opinion about this worldly icon.

A fascinating and transcendent documental that you should not miss it!
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If you are at all interested in Japanese artists, this is one you'll want to know about. It's really an amazing documentary and you won't regret watching it. If you are offended by nudity and sexual exploitation as social commentary, though, you should probably skip it...
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Format: DVD
Arakimentari

An excellent trip into the world of one of Japan's photography GIANTS. For many years Araki Noboyushi has been constantly producing an amazing amount of work, and has literally hundreds of books to his name. He photographs everything: portraits, street snapshots, nudes, porn, architecture, himself and his life. He has said that we'd wish to be a god with dozens of arms, and each one armed with a camera.

Very interesting, fun and sexy documentary. Director Travis Klose did a great job at following Araki and giving his film good rhythm; slowing down when it was necessary, and speeding up when things need to pick up. You'll get to see Araki working in a private photo-shoot, on the street, editing his work and talking about his life and oeuvre. If you know and like this man, this is a great film to watch. The music is great too and adds a lot to the different atmospheres throughout the film.
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I saw this at IDFA film festival in Amsterdam and have been an Araki fan ever since. I found myself totally amazed with the filmmakers ability to depict the many personalities of such a complex man. I even teared at the end. 5 stars.
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Araki is hard to describe. He is a photographer in love with life and living, which is an admirable trait, that few other people ever have a chance to experience. While mostly known for his notorious photographs, his insight into what it means to be human is really at the source of his genius.
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